A friend of mine works at the US office of Japanese men’s magazine Free & Easy, and recently alerted me to the February issue, whose theme is “rugged Ivy.”
For the hardcore Ivyphile, the best things about the issue are the small historical photos of Miyuki-zoku-type youths in the ’60s, as well as early shots of VAN founder Kensuke Ishizu. There’s also a where-are-they-now profile on the four men behind “Take Ivy.” As I can only remember about five kanji and hiragana doesn’t help if your vocabulary is limited, I didn’t get very far reading it.
Below are a few pages from the issue (it’s a bit oversized and didn’t quite fit in the scanner). I included a few nonsensical English phrases used throughout the magazine, which are always fun. “Handsome Up, Trad Boy!” would be a cool bumper sticker.
Unfortunately, Free & Easy is neither free nor easy to find. According to my friend, it’s available at Kinokuni-ya bookstores in New York and Los Angeles, at Unionmade in San Francisco, and can be ordered online from Context. I believe it’s also carried at J. Crew men’s stores.
For something easier to enjoy and completely free, try this. — CC